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Gemini alternative

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#1 GShaffer

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Posted 26 July 2009 - 11:07 AM

Anyone have any 1st hand experience with the following Goto alternative to the now $1695 Gemini upgrade? At less than half the $$ there is some attractiveness to the idea.

http://translate.goo...crogiga_016.htm

From what I gather it is not a goto in itself but does allow you to use your computer as a goto controller. Also located the following free software to use in conjunction with it....

http://www.bloomings..._-JDA1/english/

I have gemini on my G11 but not on my GM8 and given the new higher pricing of the upgrade while I really like the gemini I am not sure I like it that much :)

This looks like it might be a viable alternative for my purposes or anyone else who might not want to pay more than they did for the mount (GM8) for a goto for it.

Greg

#2 Phil Cowell

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Posted 26 July 2009 - 04:46 PM

Did you also look at the offering by SiTech? It's offered on the higher end MI mounts.
http://www.siderealt....com/index.html
It allows you to use an Argo Navis as one example with your mount.

#3 GShaffer

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Posted 26 July 2009 - 06:04 PM

I failed to find anything specific to the losmandy on that site. Lots of DOB related stuff though. Not looking to re-invent the wheel here :)

I prefer the gemini over anything else but they dont pop up used very often (without mount) because most people who have the gemini arent looking to change. I am in the case of my GM-8 however unwilling to plop down $1700 for a goto upgrade. I would come out way ahead just selling the mount and buying another one with gemini on it already.....an option not entirely lost on me......

Did you also look at the offering by SiTech? It's offered on the higher end MI mounts.
http://www.siderealt....com/index.html
It allows you to use an Argo Navis as one example with your mount.



#4 Phil Cowell

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Posted 26 July 2009 - 06:36 PM

I went the other route as I hated the Gemini. To each their own. If you contact the maker of the SiTech system they are very helpful.

Good luck in your quest.

#5 netwolf

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Posted 28 July 2009 - 11:01 AM

I have the Sitech using Gemini motors on my G-11 mount. Unlike the Gemini though you do need a PC to have full goto system. Sitech will work standalone and give you tracking as well as high speed slewing but no goto unless you use a PC. The standalone option for the Sitech is to add a Argo Navis DSC or Skycommander XP to the mix. The DSC/Sitech combo will give you a standalone goto to rival the Gemini. However in my humble opinion the Sitech Ascom driver now is the bees knees of Goto and control. It has built in funcationality like TPoint called PointXP in the Ascom driver. And more features are being added to it.

As a budding imager i always have my Laptop with me, so to me stand alone is not an issue.

Another alternative is the Littlefoot system by Rajiva
http://elegance.phot...oto/indexs.html
This will work with the exisiting hurst stepper motors, but slew speed will be limited. There are options out there to add stepper better stepper mottors to the G-11. In fact in europe there are several Stepper motor goto systems, FS2, boxdorfer, etc.

There is a yahoo group for the Sitech and many people have converted various mounts to sitech. There a number of G-11 Sitech users. Some using DIY pittman servo motor solutions. Another option is to use Sitech with the higher power MAxon motors from Losmandy.

If you want to go stepper motor i think the Littlefoot is a good one, as it has many additional features now like DSLR control, focous motor control etc.

#6 Phil Cowell

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Posted 28 July 2009 - 05:12 PM

I have a few Argo's for other scopes/mounts and find them much more elegant than the Gemini. That was my primary reason for looking at the SiTech.

#7 netwolf

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Posted 29 July 2009 - 01:09 PM

I bought the Argo Navis but have lent it to my friend who has a Gm-200 losmandy mount. It works brilliantly. I have not yet tried it with Sitech, but given the features now available in the ASCOM driver i see no need at present. Still even wihtout goto on my friends GM-200, i find the AN unbeatable in its speed and accuracy. Moving by hand and still geting targets on a SXVF-h9 sensor is amazing accuracy. If you can live without goto then the AN is king. And if you need Goto add ServoCat or Sitech both work with AN.






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